Women enterprise fund in Kenya: A study of its influence on livelihoods of women entrepreneurs in Kamukunji sub-county, Nairobi
The main objective of this study was to establish the impact of Women Entreprise Fund on the livelihood of women entrepreneurs in the informal sector in Kamukunji sub-county, Nairobi. The Women Enterprise Fund was launched by the Kenya government in 2007 with the principal objective of economic empowerment of women. A lot of resources have been put in the area of formal credit and financing without addressing other underling factors that necessities the small & medium (SMES) survival & growth. The study sought to investigate the influence of Women Enterprise Fund in improving the livelihood of women entrepreneurs as well as empowering them. The study had five specific objectives which were to examine the characteristic of Women Enterprise Fund, the role of WEF in building the capacity of women in business management, to assess the extent to which micro-credit from WEF has improved business performance, to establish the level of credit accessed and finally to examine women loanee perception of W.E. F . The study utilized two theories namely the Rational Choice Theory and the Social network theory. The site of the study was Kamukunji sub-county in Nairobi. The target populations were women groups in Kamukunji sub-county. A sample of 40 women responded was selected for interview in addition to 10 key informants, information was gathered using interview guides and questionnaires. The study was both qualitative and quantitative, data was coded and analyzed using SPSS computer package and finding made in the light of the objective of the study. The study established that livelihood of members improved as evidenced by improved living standards and improved self- esteem and also came up with challenges faced by the groups which included long duration of accessing loan and insufficient amount of loan that are granted which hinders women from engaging in desirable businesses. The study made various recommendations based on the findings which included the; need to create awareness about the loan at grass root level, need to increase the amount of loan and need to reduce conditions and terms of accessing the fund.